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Hey, Eric - Instructables in print? Answered

I've just read a comment by milo ( https://www.instructables.com/forum/TE9RJ4ZF0BJ6B70/#C2HSF7XF0E57DPT ).

It occured to me - there are over 3700 Instructables on this site, many of them wholly original, or original takes on public-domain concepts.

What about an Instructables book?

Which Instructables would you include? Exclude?

What chapter headings would you use?


If we Eric were to post an instructables book it would have to probably be in an encyclopedia format with a possibility for updates and things like that (as in new instructables). The question is whether Eric would make money to continue such a venture and still run instructables. The theming of the books could let truly innovative ones fall through the cracks without recognition. And if someone saw the book and knew it was a website wouldn't they go to where it was free? Not to be a moodkill or anything

Would the author of the Instructable get royalties?

If you were doing it for fame, wouldn't you use your own name here? If you were doing it for money, would you be giving your ideas away here? Personally, getting a slice of the profits from such a book would be nice, but it would be such a thin slice (a small percentage of what would be gained if I wrote and published a book alone), that I think it would probably be swallowed up by bank charges when I pay a US$ cheque into a UK£ account. I'd be happy with credit in print (which would translate into extra brownie points on my CV) and donating the profits to a charity. (What would be appropriate Instructables charities? New Orleans reconstruction? Alternative technologies for the third world?) Of course, I would then be kicking myself when the book went #1 globally and everybody else made a mint... ;-)

Well, you see, um, my mum doesn't know that I actually do post instructables. All she knows is that her genius son comes up with new things everyday; all that will change when a check for 6 cents arive... oops, I think it's better to donate the dough to the National Science Foundation.

Some kind of charity to support new technology for global warning...just like Virgin Earth..

I am doing it for fame, I don't use my own name cuz I've had my fill of psycho 'net stalkers. The money? meh.

We've been thinking about this... just need more time.

Don't you just hate it when some newbie steals your thunder? Sorry.

Perhaps potential buyers could look through the site and ask to have "that, that and that" in a book, or possibly ask for an instructable on a specific subject to be made and posted specially.

Food sells books, as a collection of 'real peoples real recipes' you might easily cover your costs. There are some good original DIY ideas (as above), but I think you'd be onto a loser with subjects that are better supported elsewhere, e.g. electronics (internet). As for explosions and fire... L

I agree on the foods part, most cookbooks contain more filler than decent quality stuff.

I think the best way to do something like this would be to upload everything onto either several CDs or DVDs. They could sell them in the Instructable Store. It'd be even cooler if they made a program allowing people to select which Instructables (either individually or by groups such as K'nex) they wanted on their CD and whether or not they wanted the Forums to be included. Then the program could set up the list to be burnt automatically and (as long as there's a blank disc in a burner), start the burning process. The default would be set to include everything, but if you wanted to go and personalize your disc, then it'd cost extra (but would be worth it to be rid of any instructable that you may not personally like or care for). I'd first suggest that a discussion be held to see how many people would be interested in purchasing a copy and to see if they would pay extra to be enabled to personalize their CD. If there's a large amount willing to buy the default, but not the personalized.... then it's probably not worth the effort of looking or making a program to do the things as said above and probably best to stick with the default CD with everything. I have just stumbled onto a free program that copies (mirrors) everything from a website... so I'll let you know how that goes... but it'll take quite a bit of time even if it does work. All in all, CDs would probably be easiest, since with books you would have to get it published, sent to print, and reorganize the site onto pages that can be printed. With CDs, you would still be able to search by keyword and be brought to the items whereupon the Instructable crew would have to point out the pages where each item is located. A book wouldn't be a bad idea, if it wasn't so much extra work and if a publishing company would be willing to help (I'm sure they would be though, just have to let them look through the site to find all the supporting members). Perhaps a discussion should be opened up to see what the preferred method of choice is?

I didn't really mean a book to sell to members. I was thinking of a book to sell in proper bookshops for people who like Making but haven't seen this site, or who don't have internet access in their sheds. I've browsed the shelves of UK bookstores, but I haven't seen anything like that. Depending on space, I thought between 20-50 of the better instructables, edited as required, with the photos inserted into the text. A hefty tome, wire-spiral bound, it would sit open at the right page on the workbench. Since this is just a thought-exercise at the moment, it could become a series: > Instructables: Food Hacks. > Instructables: iPod Mods. > Instructables: Fun with Plumbing Supplies > Instructables: Electronics Or maybe themed according to competitions? > Instructables: Magnetism. > Instructables: Lovable Hacks. > The PopSci Book of Instructables etc.

That seems to a good idea. I've seen DIY books in stores around the New England area (besides home improvement). And a search of Amazon, I found some DIY books:
Creative Juice
Reader's Digest DIY
Just to name a few... there's more too.

Though an Instructable book series may be just what this world needs. Perhaps even include the useful comments in the instructables while cutting out the negative ones. We all know that they would be able to put out like 2 or 3 books just based on K'nex guns.